Baidu cruises further into driverless scene with Shouqi partnership
CHINESE search engine giant Baidu and car-hailing operator Shouqi Limousine & Chauffeur are joining forces to develop driverless vehicles, the official Xinhua media service reported on Saturday.
Baidu will bring its map service to the partnership, while Shouqi will help the company develop high-precision maps for self-driving cars.
— Mighty AI (@mighty_ai) October 30, 2017
Baidu will also offer software and hardware to help the vehicles navigate using artificial intelligence technology.
Shouqi Limousine & Chauffeur, a subsidiary of the state-owned Shouqi group, operates in more than 50 cities in China offering a significant opportunity for Baidu.
The partnership is part of a wider move by the company to become an AI giant. The company recently signed an agreement with BAIC Group, a Chinese state-owned enterprise and holding company of several automobile and machine manufacturers located in Beijing, to mass produce level 4 autonomous vehicles by 2021 .
It is also targeting mass production of autonomous buses with King Long by 2018 .
In September, Baidu also announced a CNY10 billion (US$1.52 billion) investment package in the “Apollo Fund” which will drive autonomous car projects over the next three years.
The company will hold its annual “Baidu World” Technology Conference at the China World Summit Wing and Kerry Hotel in Beijing on Nov 16, where it will discuss the company’s mission and strategy, technology breakthroughs, new product developments, and Baidu’s open artificial intelligence (AI) ecosystem.